How to fix clinginess in cats

How to fix clinginess in cats

We all love cats; they are usually independent and seldom require human attention. But many of such owners often observe unusual behavior in their pet cats and want to know a definite answer to why is my cat clingy sometimes.

Some of the cats often want your attention and love. If they do not receive your admiration and love, their nature might turn into clinginess. But you as a pet owner do not worry about such conditions; many practical ways can help you to calm down the clinginess of your cat. Some of the common ones are listed below –

1. Increase Interaction with Your cat

If you ever noticed that why is my cat so clingy all of a sudden? It generally occurs when they witness a lack of attention from their owners. A few minutes of your love and attention can quickly fix such kinds of problems. Try to play games with your cat-like chasing a ball or flashing a laser light on the floor to let her chase.

In the cases when you find some troubles in your cat moving around due to lack of space, try to play such games that do not require much space. In the cases when your cat is persistently clingy it might need your serious attention and love.

2. Rewarding Your Cat

If you feel that your cat is trying to draw your attention by scratching your sofa and any of your household stuff. Or you find them rubbing them against your legs. You may need to reward them for any of their good behavior. This may increase confidence in them that their owners love and admire them. But care should be taken if the clinginess went way out of the way it should be discouraged. There are two important things that you can keep in your mind under such circumstances –

How to fix clinginess in cats

  • If your cat is performing some undesirable activities to impress you, avoid them.
  • If you feel that their behavior is normal to encourage it.

3. Try To Enter and Exit Your House Calmly

If you are wondering why my cat is suddenly clingy, the way you enter and leave the house can be the possible reason. Many of the cats often suffer from separation anxiety from their masters. If your cat meows loudly when you leave it may be a possible symptom of your cat’s clinginess behavior.

On the whole, you should take care of the following points –

  • Leave your home quietly and calmly
  • While entering your home wait for a few moments before giving attention to your cat
  • Do not take the departure from your cat too lovingly or sensitively, try to make them feel normal and part of the daily routine

Taking such steps will eventually make your cat less sensitive from being away from you hence make them less clingy.

4. Hiring a Pet Sitter

Despite all your love and efforts, if you still feel why is my cat clingy, you can hire a good pet sitter. It usually happens when you are away from home doing your chores, your cat alone in the house feels bored. Hiring an expert pet sitter can fill their empty time with playful activities. Thus after a few weeks, you can notice positive changes in your cat’s behavior.

5. Change of Environment

Why is my cat clingy? Perhaps there is some problem in the environment of your home. Sometimes the clinginess of your cat is because of the boring atmosphere of your house. Such cats do not find ways to pass their time in such a boredom environment hence becoming clingy. Here are a few of the changes that you can bring in their lives and your homes for your cats.

How to fix clinginess in cats

  • Introducing them with puzzle toys
  • Toys in the form of treat-dispenser
  • Pieces of paper or empty paper bags
  • Ping pong balls

You can even arrange a treasure hunt for them, by hiding some of their favorite food at appropriate places.

6. Introduce Them to a New Cat

Maybe your cat is clingy because she is the only pet in the house and wants a partner to play with. You may get another cat in such cases. Just remember that your cat has to be compatible with your new cat. Care should be taken of their breed and age before deciding this. Introducing incompatible cats can make their clinginess even more. Also, you have to observe how comfortable they are together.

How do I make my cat less clingy?

Cats often get clingy when they suffer from separation anxiety. These are the most common symptoms in cats. They are very protective and reactive in such cases. As they do not want to be left alone, they often show such behavior.

The main reasons for your cat to clingy are –

  • Cases when they were orphaned or abandoned
  • In case they were weaned too soon
  • Removing their littermates in their early stage

Signs Your Cats May Show

Such cats when left alone show an odd behavior. They may urinate or defecate outside of their litter box, or just hide in a closet. They may scratch your furniture or any of your valuable items. When you return to the home they would always want to be in your lap.

What to do in Such Cases?

In such cases, it is advisable to visit your vet. Vet after completing the physical examination of your cat can reach a proper conclusion. He may also take some of the basic laboratory tests to ensure its fitness and ask you some of the important questions regarding your cat. Thus, he can reach a proper conclusion whether the reasons are physical or emotional. He may then guide you further regarding the same.

Can your cat be too attached to you?

Many of the researchers come up with a different explanation for this question. Some of them say it’s their normal tendency, while the others say too much attachment of your cat towards you can cause problems.

Reasons for Attachment of your Cat

Connection: You are the whole world to your cat. Your cats feel secure with you and want to enjoy every moment with you. The trust bond that is developed within you and your cat cannot be replaced by some other person.

Too early Weaning of Cats: Kittens that are separated too early from their mother also show such traits in their behavior. You are the only person after their mother with whom they can feel secure.

Problems in Breed: Many breeds of cats often reflect such behavior. If the parents of the cat show such behavior, the same are induced in them. Norwegian, Siberians, Russian blues, Bengals, Forest cats, Himalayans breeds of cats often follow their parent’s behavior.

A lot of cats like their independence. Unlike dogs, these aloof furballs are praised for being low maintenance and taking care of themselves. Aside from mealtime, cats bathe, use the litter box and do pretty much everything else without the help of humans. It’s hard to imagine such proud felines acting clingy, which is why a suddenly clingy kitty can raise some suspicion.

If your cat has suddenly begun acting clingier than usual, you might be tempted to dismiss the behavior as bizarre and not give it a second thought. However, drastic changes in behavior one way or the other are not only strange—they’re usually cause for concern.

While a trip to the vet is necessary to make sure your furry friend is okay, here are some common reasons why your independent cat is suddenly following at your heels.

Chronic health problems

Cats are independent by nature, and this behavior usually extends to their health and wellbeing. Our feline friends will go to extreme lengths to hide their pain and handle the problem on their own. That’s why pet parents need to pay such close attention to detect an infected wound or a sore paw.

But, while many cats hide away when they feel sick or are injured, others might do the opposite. Becoming clingy might be their way of asking for help because they’re dealing with a serious health concern.

If your cat won’t stop following you around and is experiencing additional issues like weight loss, inappetence or anxiety, it’s a clear sign that something is wrong. It’s possible that your furry friend isn’t sure how to solve their problem, so they’re seeking comfort from you, their beloved owner. If anything, clinginess is a sign they trust you in times of need!

You won’t know for sure what’s wrong until a vet provides a diagnosis. However, clinginess is a common symptom in cats right before a seizure. Many diseases can trigger seizures in cats, so speak with your vet to get to the bottom of the issue.

Cognitive dysfunction or disability

As senior cats age, they’re more likely to become clingy. This could be a sign of cognitive dysfunction. Older cats may experience a range of symptoms, including loss of sight, hearing, balance and coordination. Essentially, cats with cognitive dysfunction are not as sharp as they used to be and get clingy because they rely on their owners’ senses for guidance.

Younger cats can be clingy for a similar reason. While cognitive dysfunction is most common in older cats, feline companions of all ages can suffer from hearing and vision impairments that make them feel unsteady in your home. Consider scheduling a consultation with the vet if your cat is clingy, walks hesitantly around the house or bumps into furniture.

How to fix clinginess in cats

New family members

Cats are creatures of habit, and they need a routine in order to feel safe. A regular feeding time, litter box cleaning and daily schedule help them feel at ease. But they also grow accustomed to your house and the people living in it.

New members of the household like a baby, grandparent or another furry friend can throw your kitty’s routine out of whack. If your household recently changed and your cat became clingy overnight, they might be suspicious of the strange new people in your home!

It can take time for your cat to adjust to these changes. Help them with the transition by limiting other changes to their routine. Keep up a consistent feeding regimen and give them lots of attention to let them know there’s no reason to be afraid.

Stressful environment

New family members are stressful enough for cats, but lots of other things could stress your cat out, too. Clinginess could be a sign that your cat trusts you but not others. Pay close attention to your cat’s behavior when certain people or pets walk into the room. If they scurry in the presence of a regular visitor, you know there’s a problem.

Any number of other factors could contribute to a stressful environment. For example, cats don’t like thunder or fireworks any more than dogs do. The sheer number of guests that come over for the holidays might increase your cat’s anxiety and force them to stay by your side for protection. Try to see things from your cat’s perspective and determine what’s causing them trouble.

Sudden clinginess from independent cats might be a welcomed change of pace for you as the owner. However, keep your furry friend’s feelings in mind and realize that an underlying issue is likely to blame for the change. Whether it be emotional or physical, investigate the problems your cat is facing so they can return to their normal, happy and independent self.

How to fix clinginess in catsFeline personalities are shaped by biology and environment. Cats with timid, nervous temperaments may become clingy due to specific phobias or the feline equivalent of generalized anxiety disorder. Cats are also likely to develop needy personalities if they have suffered abandonment, deprivation, or poor socialization as kittens.

Certain cat breeds (such as the Siamese) tend to be more affectionate, whereas others are usually more independent. Not all affectionate cats are clingy, but they may be more likely to develop this trait, particularly when under stress.

Symptoms of Over-Dependence in Cats

Clingy cats want to be with their owners constantly. They demand attention frequently and try to maintain physical contact (such as sitting on an owner’s lap) as much as possible. They follow their owners around, become distressed when left alone, and may lose their appetites or vomit when their owners leave the house. In extreme cases, they develop neurotic habits such as:

If a formerly independent cat has suddenly become needy, this usually signals a medical problem or anxiety about a specific event, such as:

  • The arrival of a new baby or pet
  • The death of a beloved animal or person
  • Moving house

If a cat that wasn’t needy in the past suddenly begins exhibiting signs of clinginess, bring her in for a veterinary check-up to rule out illness. If the clinginess has been triggered by a recent change, provide extra attention to get her through the rough patch. With a little support, most cats eventually return to normal. However, if the neediness is a long-term problem rather than a temporary reaction, the following approaches can be used to reduce separation anxiety and increase confidence and independence.

How to Reduce Separation Anxiety in Cats

Clingy cats usually suffer from separation anxiety. Fortunately, there are a number of ways to reduce separation anxiety in over-dependent cats:

  • Don’t engage in elaborate good-bye routines when leaving the house; have keys ready by the door or in a bag so you can exit quickly.
  • Give a favourite toy or treat to the cat just before you leave so that she’ll associate your leaving with something positive.
  • When returning home, ignore the cat for 10-15 minutes, especially if she demands attention. Wait until she’s calm and then provide affection.
  • If the cat engages in undesirable behaviour such as house soiling or scratching furniture while you’re out, don’t yell or punish her, as this will make stress-induced behaviours worse.
  • Provide a hideaway (this can be anything from a fancy carpeted kitty condo to a cardboard box with a doorway cut into it). Add a piece of your clothing (unwashed so that it has your scent on it) for comfort. This gives the cat a safe place to retreat when she’s alone and anxious. A comfort object should also be provided if she needs to stay overnight at the vet’s or board somewhere else temporarily.
  • A few fake departures can be helpful for teaching the cat not to panic whenever she sees you getting ready to leave. Put on your coat and go out for a minute or two, then come back, varying the length of these excursions until the cat learns that not every leave-taking means you’ll be gone for hours or days.

How to Reduce Clinginess in Over-Dependent Cats

To help needy cats become more confident and independent:

  • Engage in interactive play rather than cuddling.
  • Ignore demanding behaviour. Have one or more set times to dispense affection (such as in the evening with a good book or favourite television show), and stick to those routines.
  • If the cat begins to knead or suck on your clothing or earlobes (common self-comforting behaviours in needy cats), gently remove her from your lap, get up, and leave the room.
  • If she’s fixated on one person, have others share in petting, feeding, playing, and grooming to expand the circle of people with whom she feels comfortable.
  • Try a calming feline pheromone product such as Feliway (not all cats respond to it, but many do).
  • If the cat is friendly toward other cats, consider adopting a second cat for company, preferably a kitten to reduce the likelihood of dominance struggles, and make sure to handle the introductions properly.
  • Sometimes neediness results from boredom. To prevent boredom, provide an enriched environment with plenty of distractions, such as solo toys, healthy treats hidden around the house (assuming the cat is not overweight), cat trees, cat-safe plants, and an entertaining view (such as a bird feeder outside a window).
  • Owners who are afraid to let their cats out due to traffic, predators, pet thieves, and other hazards should consider putting up a cat fence or enclosure if they have outdoor space so that they can let their cats out safely. Leash training and taking the cat out for safe excursions is also an option.
  • If the cat’s anxiety is causing him to urinate, spray, or defecate in inappropriate places, see Why Cats Soil Outside the Litter Box for deterrents and reconditioning strategies (house soiling may also be caused by a medical problem or a dirty litter box, so if a cat begins soiling around the house, first clean the box and take her for a veterinary check-up before assuming the problem is behavioural).

In extreme cases, if all else fails, a veterinarian may prescribe anti-anxiety medication or recommend a natural anxiety remedy.

For more cat articles, see the main Cats page.

Posted by Elena O’Reilly | Apr 25, 2020 | Cat | 0 |

How to fix clinginess in cats

Now that you finally realize that your lovely cat has become too old or sick and has to leave you forever. Many questions must have arisen in your mind, such as will it hurt them? Can I have to be with them during the process? How to euthanize a cat at home?

Completely knowing all such facts can give you and your family a quiet relief in such situations. A cat can quickly be euthanized both in your homes as well as in the clinic. It’s your personal decision that depicts your love towards your cat and its responsibility for the same.

WARNING

This article is only serving for educational purposes, and you should therefore not try it at home. It’s also important to accept your position as a pet keeper and not as a professional to significant steps like this one.

The whole exercise could backfire, and you won’t have an idea of what to do next in such a scenario. It’s also worth noting that it’s a life you’re dealing with and your empathy for animals may make you fail after initiating the process.

This is a Medical Procedure to euthanize your pet and we encourage you that should be discussed with your veterinarian before giving Benadryl, Aspirin, Insulin or any medicine to a pet.

NOTE :

If your animal is truly suffering, contact your vet, local animal shelter, or animal rescue. They can put you in touch with the right person. An animal should never have to suffer because of finances. There is help available.

If you no longer want the responsibility of caring for a pet, there are animal shelters and rescue groups who can find new homes for unwanted animals.

At Home or Vet’s- The Important Decision One Must Plan

Perhaps in the home, the process of euthanasia can be more comfortable as you do not have to carry them to a vet’s office. It’s also useful in case you have some other pets in your house as they can support your cat too. On the other hand, if you have younger children who have developed an emotional attachment with the cat, prefer such euthanasia at the vet, as you do not want them to witness such a process and feel depressed.

In case you have decided to euthanize your pet at home, make sure it is that legal in your state. You may also have to visit a pet cemetery for further process. Still have doubts regarding how to euthanize a cat at home follow this step by step process. Make sure that you are deciding your cat to bury in your house garden or a cemetery.

Remember, many of the cemeteries also offer the ashes of your cat in case you want to keep them as a memorial. Even they know that it’s your best friend, and there are plenty of feelings attached.

Step#1: Be Planned

One of the problems, if you are euthanizing your cat at home, is that you may or may not get a vet to visit your home. If somehow you manage a vet to visit home, then surely you do not have to worry about anything at all. But the problem arises when you have to plan all the home remedies euthanize cat alone. Remember to inform the entire family to say a final goodbye to your cat. Explain to your children if necessary.

How to fix clinginess in cats

Step#2: Choosing Medicines to Euthanize The Cat

This is one of the crucial steps in how to euthanize a cat at home. There are many medicines available to complete the process comfortably and successfully.

Some of the effective ones are –

Aspirin :

Remember that cats are very sensitive to aspirin; they do not synthesize it as fast as dogs or humans. This weakness of our cat can be one of your tools. Overdosing your cat with aspirin with twice and thrice the regular amount can make them sleep peacefully while 4 to 5 will make them quickly pass away.

Insulin :

This is one of the alternate methods in how to euthanize your cat at home. By using Novolin R insulin, you can reach your goal frequently. For the readers who do not know, insulin is a life-saving diabetes remedy. Its original work is to reduce the glucose level in the body. In case if one takes its overdose, the medicine can significantly reduce the glucose level of the body causing the death of the person.

How to fix clinginess in cats

Thus by injecting your pet with a large amount of such insulin will painlessly kill them. So ten units of syringe you can inject in any of their fatty tissues to provide them with a peaceful death. These are the two best ways that are admired by everyone if they want to euthanize their cat at home. Many other drugs are also available in the market that can serve the same purpose.

Step#3: Knowing the Right Time

Is It the Pain of Their Old Age?

Discuss well, either with your friend or your vet that the symptoms your cat shows are due to old age or just arthritis problems. Such arthritis problems can be cured, and that is entirely different from the old age symptoms of your cat. Remember that cats do not show their pain and try to adapt to the pain within them. So you have to monitor such a condition. Some of the symptoms that you feel that can make you aware regarding euthanizing your cat.

  • Check if your cat eat, sleep and moves around comfortably
  • Does she or he responds to your signal and greets you as before
  • Do they now feel interested in their favorite food when you offer them
  • You may also witness vomiting in your cats along with the degradation of its fur for no specific reason.

How to fix clinginess in cats

If you feel that there are negative results of all the above points, then perhaps your cat might need a euthanizing procedure to end its life peacefully. You and your family members can easily detect such awkward behavior of the cat. Many cats sadly die on their own in vacant areas of your house, while the others may need your help for this.

Step#4: Staying During Euthanasia or Not

Now, this is entirely your wish and the attachment you had with your cat over the years. Many cat owners like to stay with them in their last hours to show their love and respect to their friends. While others cannot face such a loss and just keep them away. One should remember that never feel guilty if you have performed euthanize your cat. You have provided them relief from their painful moment. If you wish, you can see your cat afterward and meet your cat in the end.

Getting A New Cat

So now prepare yourself to return to an empty home, try to talk with your family, and try to fill up the atmosphere. Buying a new pet to fill the deficiency is proved admirable. Try to divert your attention to buy a new pet. Also, consult with your friends, neighbors, and colleges for the same. In case you have children take them to any amusement parks or any other place to make them overcome the situation. Sooner or later, you and your family will overcome the situation and can also decide to bring a new kitty to fill up the vacant space. Although everyone knows that no two cats are the same, but something is always better than nothing.

Now you may feel that the moments you enjoyed with your cat are irreplaceable. You also get attached to them in their way. But it’s the time to move on. Buy another cat of your choice and try to get connect with it.

How to fix clinginess in cats

Let’s be honest, every living thing has a specific life span and the average cat lifespan is somewhere between twelve and twenty years.

For this reason, most owners form an incredibly tight bond with their beloved pet and often fear the worst when it comes to illness or rather strange behavior.

It’s true, cat owners can unnecessarily fear the worst when they spot certain symptoms but at the same time, these symptoms or signs should always be taken seriously.

In this article, we take a look at some common signs associated with cat nearing end of life and what you should know about the lifespan of your cat.

6 Common Signs That Your Cat May be Nearing End of Life

While it’s common to wonder if cats can get conjunctivitis or the meaning behind catloaf, there’s no reason to assume that any one symptom is a sign of cat nearing end of life.

With this in mind, here are some of the most common reasons you might want to take your cat for a checkup.

1. Your Cat is Weak or Especially Lazy

Some cats are lazy by nature but any owner should spot when they seem especially lazy.

When most cats are nearing the end of life, they lose power or strength and willingness in terms of activity.

For instance, cats nearing the end of life will have visible weakness in their hind legs in particular.

2. Your Cat is Colder or Hotter than Usual

In the latter stages of the cat lifespan, you should notice a change in body temperature.

More specifically, both the ears and paws tend to be cold and even below 100 degrees.

While this is normal in very hot or cold conditions, these signs of extremity will also happen in normal temperatures.

Introducing the velcro cat! This is the type of cat that will give you LOTS of affection and attention. They broke the stereotypical cat personality of being aloof and indifferent.

Velcro cats will follow you everywhere you go — even to the bathroom. They will deliberately put themselves on top of your computer when you are working. You will always catch them staring at you or meowing while you are preparing to leave the house. And because they always want to be with you, they may refuse to eat when you are not around.

Although it is nice to have a cat that seems devoted to you, it may also mean that something is amiss, and it could be a bit troubling over time. What if your kitty becomes too much to handle?

Difference between a clingy cat and a friendly cat

First, let us draw the line between a friendly cat and a clingy cat to check if your pet is turning into a velcro type.

Friendly Cat Clingy Cat
Your cat rubs herself against your foot or legs when she is only hungry. Your cat is lying on you out of nowhere.
Your cat licks or kneads you sometimes. Your cat always licks or kneads you whenever she wants.
Your cat is alright being alone all the time. Your cat follows you everywhere you go, even while you are using the bathroom.
Your cat peacefully plays by herself while you are working or reading. Your cat will do anything to get your attention, like putting herself on top of your laptop or book.
Your cat will never stare at you and will avoid your eyes if you do so. Your cat stares at you almost 24/7.
Your cat is content eating by herself. You must be at home when she eats, or else she will not eat.
Your cat loves to sleep alone in her own bed. Your cat treats your bed as their own just to be close to you.

In short, a friendly cat will get your attention only when she needs you. This is not the case with a clingy or velcro cat. They want to be around you day and night, even while you are sleeping or busy with your own day to day activities.

Two types of a clingy cat

There are two “breeds” of a velcro cat: the needy cat and the demanding cat. We’ve mentioned above the characteristics of a needy cat when we compared it to a friendly cat. How about a finicky cat? Here are the signs that you have one:

  • Your cat yells at you when it is lunch or dinner time.
  • Your cat will cause a commotion to wake you up in the morning.
  • Your cat will do anything until you pick her up.
  • Your cat spontaneously sits on your lap without being invited.

9 Signs that your cat is clingy

Now let us dive deeper into the workings of a velcro cat. If you experienced four or more of the scenarios below, congratulations (?) you have a clingy cat:

  1. You’ve lost count on how many times you’ve tripped over your cat.
  2. You are always cautious when you walk around your house to avoid stepping on your cat.
  3. Your cat repeatedly kneads or scratches you to get attention.
  4. Your cat goes on a hunger strike if you are not at home.
  5. You are always sharing your bed with your cat, or is it the other way around?
  6. They will get restless when you sit on a different chair.
  7. Your cat will cling to you whenever she gets a chance.
  8. You will find yourself petting your cat always.
  9. Your cat is always rushing towards you whenever you leave the house and will demand you to stay.

Why is your cat so clingy?

At first, you’ve thought it is cute, but later on, you will realize how distressing it is for both of you. As much as you want to be there for your cat, it is not possible. You still have to go to work or school or run some errands inside and outside the house.

But why is your cat clingy in the first place? Is it somehow your fault because you are spoiling her? You are letting her do whatever she wants. You let them bother you and even reward their needy behavior with treats, scratches, or belly rubs.

However, if it is nothing like that, then maybe it is inherent or a medical condition? It is possible that she was separated from her mom too early, and now she thinks you are her true “mother.” Another reason is she is a foster kitty that is in constant search of her forever home.

It is also possible that she has a medical issue. Since they cannot verbally tell you she is not feeling well, they will show you through their clingy behavior. Or your cat is only bored. Yup, it isn’t because of a medical condition or trauma. Your cat is just B-O-R-E-D.

Cats are complicated.

How to handle a clingy cat

Here are the “home remedies” to tackle your cat’s velcro ways:

  • Gently pick your cat up and move it away from you when it rubs non-stop against you or disturbs you in the most inopportune moments.
  • It would be hard at first, but you should ignore them when they scratch your door. You must resist!
  • Try to lessen your interaction with them. Remember that not every mew or lick warrants a couple of scritches or treats.
  • Give her toys, scratch posts, and vertical space so they won’t get bored. Better yet, adopt another cat to give them company.

If the solutions above didn’t work out, you and your cat must visit the vet to seek medical attention because she might not be feeling well.

What if I still want a cat minus the clinginess?

Who in their right mind will back out from owning an adorable creature? If you are thinking of adopting a kitten but don’t want to deal with too much clinginess, we have a perfect alternative for you.

It is none other than Perfect Petzzz, a lifelike pet that can provide the same comfort and companionship as living pets. It offers a real pet ownership experience without the hassles and expenses like vet bills.

Perfect Petzzz will never annoy you or go velcro on you because it will just sleep peacefully on their plush bed and emit cute little snores. It will be contented with whatever amount of attention and affection you give to them.

You don’t need to adopt another cat to give them company because you know that a plus one will cost you a lot. Moreover, you can still go on with your everyday life since they will never be demanding or needy.

Each Perfect Petzzz bundle includes a new plush pet bed, collar with pet tag, pet brush, and adoption certificate. It’s available for purchase through our site, Walmart, and Amazon. For any other inquiries, contact us here.

Cat Separation Anxiety is a problem that can easily be misunderstood. It is one of those cat behavior problems that is recognised more often in children and in dogs and can easily be mistaken for being naughty.

Separation cat anxiety occurs when your cat experiences extreme anxiety, insecurity and fear when separated from their owner.

Now, we may think that it’s cute that they miss us so much, but it can be very distressing for the animal.

What Causes Cat Separation Anxiety?

Separation anxiety in children is seen as a normal phase of development. The child is developing its own identity and having to learn that when their mother (or other care giver) goes away, they are still safe and they do come back.

If the child doesn’t learn these lessons and gets stuck in that phase then they can develop a separation anxiety disorder. So a similar picture could be suggested for cats.

How to fix clinginess in cats

There is a theory that it may become problematic if a cat was weaned from its mother too early. Alternatively it could be a result of us over fussing and the animal getting used to having constant attention (like a spoilt child). Or simply cat anxiety resulting from sudden changes in the owners work pattern, or feeling abandoned when the owners go away on holiday. There really isn’t one simple reason.

Identifying The Symptoms

Cats who suffer with cat separation anxiety are often referred to as clingy cats but their other behaviors that can manifests and which we often mis-understand and find extremely annoying.

These can Include:

Other concerning symptoms could include:

How to fix clinginess in cats

You can see how we might mistake such cat behaviour as simply misbehaving. Urinating or defecating on our bedclothes for instance. Any owner would be infuriated by this happening and the risk with that is that we might scold them – which will just make them feel even more anxious, scared and confused and therefore make the problem even worse!

But through understanding the problem, making some simple behavioural and environmental changes and perhaps with some added help of relaxing supplements such as Calm Care we can help relieve our feline friends distress.

When they urinate or defecate in places where we normally sit or sleep, that is because they associate those places with our smell, and they are adding their own scent to comfort themselves. Our own cat Little Mo did just this when we went away for a few days and we had our friends look after her instead, so we know how upsetting it can be!

So What Can We Do About Cat Separation Anxiety?

First of all, make sure that any of the symptoms (especially things like over grooming, urinating and defecating in the wrong places, and constant meowing) aren’t actually signs of other underlying health problems, discomfort or pain. Get your pet checked out at the vets as symptoms like these might actually indicate infections, bladder stones, parasites or other problems.

Ways to overcome cat separation anxiety include:

Calming Medicines and Supplements

While making some of the following changes and while your cat is getting used to learning that it doesn’t have to feel afraid when you’re not around, it can sometimes help to use a gentle calming sedative to alleviate their symptoms of stress and anxiety. Check with your vet about any prescription medicines or supplements that may be safe for your own individual pet.

A natural product to:

Desensitization:

Try to wean your pet from being so dependent on you. Only give them attention when they are not being too clingy or demanding. Don’t fuss over them for the fifteen minutes or so before you go out to work, or the fifteen minutes or so when you come home.

They may associate certain habits and items with being left alone. So try leaving your travel bags out, or their carry case, and put some of their toys in them so they don’t just associate them with you going away. Or wear your work clothes around the house occasionally to break any similar associations.

Stimulating Environment:

Make their environment more interesting for them. Cat social behavior dictates that they enjoy lots of stimulus, so provide toys, scratching posts and comfortable and secure places for them to sleep. Also, leave and make sure that they have plenty to drink and access to a clean litter tray.

Toys that provide a challenge and a reward, such as balls that you can fill with cat treats that fall out as they chase them around, can help keep your cat entertained for lengthy periods of time.

Try leaving either the television or radio on for them. This may sound strange but the sound of voices or familiar music may help to reassure them that they are not alone. There are even ‘cat videos’ available that have sound and pictures of birds and other small animals to keep their attention throughout the day.

By making such simple changes and being patient with your nervous kitty, you can help reassure them that when you go away, you do come home again and that they haven’t been abandoned. They will feel more self-assured and confident and over time, their symptoms of cat separation anxiety and stressful behaviour will be things of the past.

Find out more about Calm Care and how you can help your cat feel calmer and less stressed by learning more at PetWellbeing.com here.

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Separation Anxiety in Pit Bulls

Clinginess is a sign of separation anxiety. If you allow or inadvertently encourage your dog to be clingy, you could end up with a “Velcro dog.” This is a dog who is so reliant on your company that he can’t cope alone. Fix this by making periods of isolation rewarding.

Discouraging Clinginess

Step 1

Monitor your dog’s behavior and note down when he is at his most clingy. It may be that the problem is worse just before you leave for work, just after you get home or only in the presence of other dogs.

Step 2

Expose your dog to separation anxiety triggers. For example, if he is clingiest before you leave the house, put on your coat and grab your keys, but don’t leave. This behavior shows the dog that those triggers aren’t necessarily a precursor to periods of separation.

Step 3

Ignore the dog when he is being clingy. Make being at your side boring and non-stimulating. If you’ve previously responded to needy, attention-seeking behavior with attention or fuss, you may have accidentally trained your dog to be clingy. By ignoring the dog, you show him that his clinginess doesn’t get a positive outcome.

Step 4

Reward the dog for voluntarily separating himself. Leave distractions such as toys and treats around the house and wait for your dog to spot them. This tells the dog that his environment is most stimulating when he leaves your side.

Encouraging Isolation

Step 1

Leave the crate door open and place a treat and some toys inside. Allow him to investigate at his own pace and make the crate a place where he wants to be.

Step 2

Praise the dog verbally once inside the crate. Leave the door open and allow him to exit the crate when he wishes.

Step 3

Repeat exposure to the crate. Once your dog is comfortable in the crate or in the basket and has built a positive association with it, close the door for five minutes, but don’t leave.

Step 4

Shut the dog in the crate or room for five minutes every day for a week. Each time you shut him in, move further away from the crate, but remain in sight.

Step 5

Shut the dog in the crate and leave the area. Return after five minutes and allow your dog out, but don’t be overly fussy. This demonstrates that periods of isolation are normal and they always end up with him being reconnected with you.